1st Edition

Troubling Children Studies of Children and Social Problems

By Joel Best Copyright 1994
    260 Pages
    by Routledge

    253 Pages
    by Routledge

    Increasingly, sociologists have turned their attention to the social problems of children– in particular, of younger children. This collection reflects those recent interest. While most researchers have focused on social problems involving adolescents, this volume offers instead original case studies of problems concerning preadolescent children.The papers that Best has gathered here represent different theoretical and methodological approaches. They report on social issues in Albania, Kenya, and Japan as well as in the United States. The range of social problems they address is a wide one, from broad societal crises to decision-making within families. Topics include the effects of economic and social crises in Africa and Eastern Europe; concerns about crack use and other forms of fetal endangerment; parental decisions about spanking, toy choices, and letting children listen to rock music; schooling in day care and elementary and junior high schools; and children's perceptions of environmental crises.Troubling Children adds a new dimension to courses in social problems. It also offers a different set of perspectives for those concerned with sociology of preadolescent children and their discontents.

    I: Introduction; 1: Troubling Children: Children and Social Problems; II: Children in Societal Crises; 2: A Threatened Generation: Impediments to Children’s Quality of Life in Kenya; 3: When Parents Discuss the Price of Bread: Albanian Children and the Economic Crisis; III: Pregnancy and Infancy; 4: Little Strangers: Pregnancy Conduct and the Twentieth-Century Rhetoric of Endangerment; 5: “Crack Babies” and the Politics of Reproduction and Nurturance; IV: Families and Children; 6: Ritual, Magic, and Educational Toys: Symbolic Aspects of Toy Selection; 7: The Changing Meanings of Spanking; 8: The Positive Functions of Rock and Roll Music for Children and Their Parents; V: Schools and Children; 9: Normalizing Daycare—Normalizing the Child: Daycare Discourse in Popular Magazines, 1900–1990; 10: The Medicalization and Demedicalization of School Refusal: Constructing an Educational Problem in Japan; VI: Children’s Perspectives on Social Problems; 11: If We Don’t Do Anything Now, There Won’t Be Anything Left: Categories of Concern in Children’s Drawings of Environmental Crisis


    Joel Best